Friday, 3 April 2009

The Friarsgate Inheritance by Bertrice Small

******** CONTAINS SPOILERS ***************
BOOK ONE: Rosamund
Rosamund Bolton is the heiress to the manor of Friarsgate in the wild Cumbrian border between England and Scotland. More than a splendid inheritance, Friarsgate will chart the fate of the orphaned beauty widowed at a precious young age. It will take her on an adventure that will test the limits of passion and betrayal, change the meaning of the word enemy, and turn even the most daring fantasy into true love...

At the age of thirteen Rosamund Bolton has been widowed twice her uncle Henry Bolton is desperate to get his hands on Friarsgate but, fortunately for Rosamund her late 2and husband has entrusted her to Henry VIII and it is there that she will find her third husband.

Much of this book, indeed the seies is set in my favourite English county of Cumbria and the rest in my favourite historical period and that of Henry VIII's court, Rosamund becomes great friends not only with Kathrine of Aragon but, also of Henry's sister Mary. They both feature quite alot in the first 2 books.

I wouldn't say if you love Tudor history you will love this as its not a historical fiction book per se but, if you love a good romance with asprinkling of history the ye go for it, personaly I love this book and the whole series I found it quite engrossing and it was quite an easy read nothing too taxing on the brain.

BOOK TWO: Until You


The time is the 16th century, and at the tender age of 22, Rosamund Bolton has been widowed three times and has three daughters. Lest her family marry her off a fourth time, she takes the girls and flees to her friend Meg, the Queen of Scotland. There she meets Patrick Leslie, a man in his 40s who sweeps her off her feet--and takes her away with him on a diplomatic mission to Italy. When they return, Rosamund wants marriage. Patrick agrees, but before they can manage to marry, England and Scotland go to war--and Rosamund must battle her enemies simply to stay alive.

Rosamund who has no been widowed three times finally founds herself completely and utterly in love with a much older man, Patrick Leslie who at 50 is much older than Rosamund.

A large part of this book takes us to San Lorenzo which I didnot find as fascinating as when it was based in Cumbria or King Henry's court and personally I found for me the amount of this book spent in San Lorenzo could have been shortened a little.

Rosamund has this thought that she and Patrick will not be together forever but, Patrick does not want to listen to that and can't bear to think about being apart from Rosamund, whether they will be together or not well ....

Of the four books I think this was the weakest although still enjoyable I much preferred the other three books.

BOOK THREE: Philippa
Philippa, Rosamund Bolton's willful eldest daughter, who couldn't care less about her mother's beloved estate. Even though she is destined to inherit Friarsgate, Philippa prefers to spend her time at court serving as one of Queen Katherine's maids of honor. When Philippa's fiance, Giles Fitzhugh, unexpectedly breaks their engagement, King Henry VIII and Queen Katherine send Philippa back to Friarsgate, mistakenly thinking she needs time for her wounded affections to heal. Fortunately, one of Philippa's favorite relatives soon arranges a new match with Crispin St. Clair. At first Philippa is certain she can convince Crispin to allow her to continue her service to the queen, but she soon discovers that she prefers spending time with her sexy, soon-to-be-husband rather than dallying at court.

Rosamunds eldest daughter Philippa who wants no part of the future of Friarsgate spends much time at the court of Henry VIII and in the service of Katherine of Aragon, the first part of this book Philippa comes over as quite difficult although in some parts quite funny (the part when Henry VIII & Charles Brandon find her with some others from the caght was particuarly amusing) Philippa also becomes briefly friends with Elizabeth Blount who she is caught with.

After the disappointment of the never to be of her intended marriage and meeting her future intended husband Philippa seems to change quite a bit she has a very passionate and sensual relationship with her new husband (check out the honey scene!!), Philippa is so scared of what will happen on her wedding night but, of course once it happens she wonders what she was so frightened about.

Philippa can be rather irritating so if you can get over that it is a good read.

BOOK FOUR: The Last Heiress
New York Times bestselling author Bertrice Small presents the conclusion of her highly acclaimed saga of Rosamund Bolton and her daughters with this dazzling tale of passion, intrigue, and seduction. Set against the glorious backdrop of King Henry's sixteenth-century court, The Last Heiress stars Elizabeth Meredith, the youngest Bolton daughter, who will risk everything to protect her beloved Friarsgate.

Elizabeth is the youngest of Rosamunds daughters and is the one who inherited Friarsgate from her mother after Philippa refused to take it, she is s at home there and has no interest of going to King Henry's court until her mother becomes concerned that there is no-one to inherit Friarsgate from Elizabeth. A husband must be found!

So to court she goes although she has little hope of finding a husband who will want to live at her northern Cumbrian estate, however she does make very good friends with the Kings future second wife, Anne Boleyn.

Although Elizabeth does not find a husband in the London court she does find a suitor although it is not all plain sailing but, it is towards the end that Elizabeth receives summons from he friend Anne who has now become Queen andis to be crowned Queen for she wants Elizabeth there and also until she gives birth to her first child. Elizabeth does not want to go and leave her precious Friarsgate but, of course she must.

Of course, she does return to Friarsgate and the ending is of course a happy one, whilst at court she made friends with Flynn a northern lad and it is he who brings the news of the demise of her good friend Anne - and I think we all know what happened.

This was a good series as I said earlier its very easy to read and though enjoyable probably not one I would read again great for a quick easy romantic read with a sprinkling of history!

No comments: